Benefits of Horse Back Riding for your Health

Physical

Horse riding is great exercise, terrific therapy and a wonderful stress reliever. Riding is much more fun than anything you can do at the gym and you also get the benefit of lots of fresh air in the country.

It’s a little known fact that horseback riding stimulates muscles in the dorsal and abdominal regions that are seldom used in everyday living. Riding horseback also causes less stress to the knees and other lower body parts than comparable forms of exercise like walking or swimming.

Riding develops balance and coordination. The movements required to cue a horse require body awareness. Riding a horse at a walk stimulates the internal organs just as walking on foot does. When riding you will be burning calories – a 140 pound person riding a horse that’s walking will burn about 2 calories a minute. The same person on a trotting horse burns 6 calories per minute, and cantering would burn 8 calories a minute. Even grooming a horse helps you lose unwanted fat – a 140 pound person burns 6 calories each minute tending to their horse.

If you have trouble tolerating pressure or stress on your joints, if you have restricted aerobic capacity, or if you need to keep your heart rate lower than a certain level, consider horse backing riding as an excellent form of physical fitness that’s also fun and relaxing. Lots of people approaching their middle years and seniors have ridden or driven into their best years with a favorite equine companion.

Mental

At first you may feel that just learning to stay on and steer the horse is a challenge. As you progress with your riding, you will discover more learning opportunities. Even the most experienced equestrian will admit that there is always something new to learn. Research has shown that lifelong learning may prevent memory loss. Just like your muscles, you brain needs exercise to keep young and supple. Riding provides an active avenue for keeping your brain exercised.

Emotional

For many, a horse is a connection with nature whether they ride in a ring or trail ride. Many people find companionship and solace while working with their horse. Although riding can present its frustrations and challenges, most people find it a relaxing pastime.

For further information on the benefits of horse back riding, please contact us.